Across northwest Myanmar, the military has begun a crackdown on local resistance forces and their civilian supporters in an operation known as Operation Anawrahta.
The operation is named after King Anawrahta Minsaw, the founder of the Pagan Empire. This king is credited with the formation of Myanmar as we know it today. He subdued Shan and Rakhine States, and promoted Theravada Buddhism in the nation. He is remembered as a fierce warrior and disciplinarian over his empire. This military campaign has already proven to be ruthless as, in the words of Asia Times author Anthony Davis, “Operation Anawrahta reflects both a different dynamic and far higher stakes: for the first time the Tatmadaw is seeking to reassert a strategic dominance… which week by week through mid-2021 has been slipping away.”
In Sagaing, the military campaign has included airstrikes, the shelling of whole villages, and the burning of internally displaced persons’ (IDPs) newly made homes. The military airstrikes aimed for People’s Defense Force (PDF) bases believed to be in the area. People living in those areas were forced to flee, as well as those whose villages were occupied and whose homes were burned. Volunteers working with IDPs told MyanmarNOW that 3,000 residents have been displaced from the area.
In Chin State in western Myanmar, the military began shelling villages after PDF fighters captured a military soldier. According to Chindwin news, over 165 houses were burned in Thantlang, where the shelling occurred. Local social media was filled with photos of pillars of black smoke rising up from the village, sitting amid the lush green hills of Chin State. UN Ambassador U Kyaw Moe Tun addressed the UN, using this most recent attack as evidence of Myanmar’s great need for assistance. “All people — I repeat all people in Myanmar — are suffering every day, every hour, every minute from atrocities, crimes against humanity committed by the military and some even brutally killed… Your serious attention to the basic rights of all people and your action to prevent all people from such atrocities is seriously needed.”
Satan and the hosts of hell take pleasure in our destruction, our deaths, our wars, our losses, our hatred, our vengeance, and our desperate thirst for power and control. But God is greater.
1. Pray that those who have suffered in these attacks are resilient and take hope in Jesus and His justice, righteousness, and judgement. Pray He helps them to forgive those who sin against them.
2. Pray that the Enemy fails — that his plans are thwarted, that the people live and rejoice, that his evils are redeemed for good, and that God is glorified, magnified, and exalted in the hearts and minds of people all over Myanmar.